Tom and I had our first consultation with Dr. Evans last Monday. She’s so young looking and cute, she can’t be much older than me. She took our medical histories and asked tons of questions. She insists that we get all sorts of screenings and tests done–blood tests for Tom, plus pap smear, blood tests and mammogram for me. I wish we would have known about this while I was waiting for our first appointment. Oh well. Hopefully I can get it all done in the next couple of weeks so that I can start the IVF cycle right away, with my next period. I think everything will test fine, so it’s just a matter of a few more weeks. I’m starting to feel hopeful about the whole thing again, though I have to remind myself there is only a 40% chance that it will work. One step at a time.
While we were there she did an ultrasound of my uterus. I don’t know how she can discern things on the screen, but she does and that’s all that matters. I have two fibroids–one of which may or may not pose a potential problem when it comes to implantation. They’ll know more next week after I have the SHG.
The whole process if extremely complicated, not surprising of course. They actually gave us a notebook–kind of like a textbook–that explains a lot of the procedures, methods, etc… We also have an IVF coordinator, her name is Cynthia. We have a direct line to her and she is our link to the doctor. This is great because we can ask her a ton of questions and we don’t have to go through a receptionist and wait hours for the doctor to call back. She gave us a checklist of the things we need to get done before we can start our first cycle.
One of the first things I had to do was call Cynthia the first day of my period, which was just on Wednesday. She set up an appointment for me to come in on Friday to have blood taken for two tests, FSH and E2. These help them know about my egg development. I will find out the results on Monday. After, Dr. Evans can recommend if she thinks I should by the 1, 2 or 3 cycle package. I guess if my result look iffy, then they recommend you buy more cycles?
We also met with the financial counselor, Rosie. In addition to paying for the IVF cycle, everything else is out of pocket–meds, tests, follow up appointments. It’s hard to say how much it will cost right now, but we should know fairly soon.
This Wednesday I have my pap smear at the UCLA health center and then will find out about getting the blood tests and the mammogram. Then the following day I will have the SHG and mock transfer. The SHG is a sonohysterography to “diagnose abnormalities of the uterus.” It’s another kind of ultrasound, but this time they inject a saline solution into the uterus. At the same time the doctor will conduct a mock transfer, which is a test run of when they do the actual embryo transfer. I suppose this is so she knows the lay of the land, as it were.